Bishop checks India's advance

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West Indies 298; India 290-6

Accurate, incisive fast bowling, supported by sharp fielding, put the West Indies back into contention before lunch on the third day of the Third Test yesterday.

India were so powerfully placed at the start, 249 for 3 replying to 298, that the home team were threatened with a considerable deficit. Instead, with Ian Bishop to the forefront, the West Indies took three wickets and restricted India to 41 runs off 24 overs. At lunch they were 290 for 6 and dependent on Mohammad Azharuddin, the last of their specialist batsmen.Azharuddin survived a close lbw decision off the young fast bowler Mervyn Dillon when two, to go into the break with 15.

Dillon, 22, made the initial breakthrough for the West Indies. The left- handed Saurav Ganguly sparred at a lifting ball wide of off-stump in the day's third over and snicked it to the wicketkeeper.

By the time the new ball was taken as soon as it became due after 80 overs, India had managed to add only 27 in 50 minutes. Dillon yielded only four runs from his five overs before giving way to Curtly Ambrose, who was once again compelling with his accuracy and movement. But it was Bishop who created the real problems at the opposite end.

The West Indies changed tactics overnight. Whereas on the previous afternoon Brian Lara, leading the team in the absence of the injured Courtney Walsh for the first time, had been excessively attacking, now he made the Indian batsmen fight for every run, with three slips at the most in close catching positions.

Bishop, sacrificing speed for accuracy and control, forcedRahul Dravid to play on after an hour and 10 minutes and claimed the wicketkeeper Nayan Mongia to a wonderful catch by Stuart Williams.

Dravid had been the perfect match for his captain Sachin Tendulkar in their partnership of 170 on the previous day, but he could not change gear and managed only another seven before he fell.

(Third day; India won toss)

WEST INDIES - First innings 298 (S Chanderpaul 137).

INDIA - First Innings

(Overnight: 249 for 3)

R Dravid b Bishop 78

S Ganguly c Browne b Dillon 22

M Azharuddin not out 15

N S Mongia c Williams b Bishop 1

A Kumble not out 8

Extras (byes 2, lb 11, nb 26, w2) 41

Total (for 6) 290

Fall: 4-253, 5-273, 6-275.

To bat: A Kuruvilla, B K V Prasad, D Ganesh.

Bowling (to date): Ambrose 24-8-59-1; Bishop 28-6-70-3; Dillon 19-5-56- 1; Rose 16-4-63-1; Hooper 8-1-28-0.

Umpires: Lloyd Barker (West Indies) and Steve Randell (Australia).